Home How-to take Notes with GitHub, Jekyll Themes, Ruby, and VSCode

How-to take Notes with GitHub, Jekyll Themes, Ruby, and VSCode

Enjoying the Squintz’s Notes? Want to make your own? Here are some of the things I’m using to keep this website updated.

Q: Why VSCode? A: Becuase I already work in it daily.

Q: What other note taking tools have you tried? A: Until now I have been taking all my notes in google docs because they are easy to access from anywhere. However, I find that once I write stuff down I never look at it again. I have also tried other task manager type tools and project management tools not worth mentioning.

Dev Environment Setup

There are better ways of setting up a dev environment for jekyll themes so if your looking at this page you should probably follow someone elses instructions.

  1. Download ruby from https://rubyinstaller.org/downloads/
  2. Install ruby by selecting MSYS2 and MINGW development tool chain from the menu
  3. If not automatically added (it should have been) the ruby bin directory (C:\Ruby31-x64\bin) to path in the Windows Environment Variables.
  4. From newly opened Powershell install bundler. Closing VSCodes Power Shell terminal and re-opening it didn’t work for me. Restarting VSCode worked as well as opening a new Power Shell form the start bar also worked. This is because the terminal didn’t know about the PATH yet.
gem install jekyll bundler
  1. CD to root directory of Jekyll Theme and run the following to install all the dependensies
cd [to local path of cloned github repo]


From Powershell:

cd [to local path of cloned github repo]
bundle exec jekyll s

This will start a local webserver so you can preview your changes without uploading to GitHub every 5 seconds (like I was doing at first).

Visual Studio Code (VSCode)

  • Install Extension: Mardown Editor by zaaack This is a WYSIWYG editor. Restart VSCode after installing. Right click on the tab of an open markdown file and open the editor. Change to split view to see a simple preview of the markdown rendering.
  • The VSCode built in git works well for staging, committing, and pushing changes.
  • Install GitHub Actions by Christopher Schleiden The Jekyll theme I’m using uses workflows to automate the testing when a change is pushed. This extension lets you view the results and status of those actions.
  • Install Code Spell Checker by Street Side Software.
This post is licensed under CC BY 4.0 by the author.